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How to Choose HID Headlights

Silverado & Sierra HID conversion info
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This is just a friendly reminder that the "How To" forum is not a place to ask questions or ask for help. What this means is it's not the place to request a "How To". This forum is meant only for members who wish to post the specific steps to complete a project or modification of some sort. All posts in here are put up for all to read and gain information on how to do something to their silverado or sierra. Please only post in this section if you have directions on how to do a modification, complete a task, or steps to take to resolve a problem. Thanks!

How to Choose HID Headlights

Postby LBZDMAX [OP] » Jan 03 2011, 5:32pm

Since the HID thread count is going through the roof on every forum I belong to I thought this might help those who are looking to make the switch a little easier. This is a basic how-to on choosing what HIDs are right for your Silverado/Sierra.

HIDs are "High Intensity Discharge" Xenon Lights. Click on the link if you want to see how they work... ultimately it's not super important... all you have to know is they're great, and you want a set post-haste.

How HIDs work:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-intensity_discharge_lamp#High-intensity_discharge_lamps

Basically, they come in a "Temperature," rated in degrees Kelvin. Here's a generic picture of the different colors. You want to pick a color that you like, but remember, some of your local law officers do not like HIDs. You should consult your local law office as to their legality in your area. This is a generic chart showing the range of available bulb colors:

Image
These colors will vary slightly from set to set as there is technically no 'hard line' between when they change.

You'll need to find out what "Size" or "Style" bulb you have. To do that, I recommend using this Bulb Fitment Chart that will tell you if you have H7, H11, 9005, 9006, or whatever....

http://www.sylvania.com/ConsumerProducts/AutomotiveLighting/LampReplacementGuide/

From there, you pick what color, and what Wattage you want; 35Watts or 55watts. I recommend 35W, they'll be plenty bright for you. I do a lot of driving out in the country and I have 35w 5k HIDs in my lows/highs/fogs and they blind the hell out of everything. I have NO problem lighting up the world at night with them. I get flipped off on a regular basis around town with just my low beams on as my truck sits a little higher than most vehicles on the road and HIDs are considerably brighter than stock headlights. If you feel you have the need for 55w then go for it. It's your truck and that's the beauty of individuality.

If you want to put HID's in all of your lighting (your Lows, Highs, and Fogs), you would need three (3) kits.

Installation is pretty simple, here's a couple tips.

These (2001 +) trucks are reverse polarity, meaning that you will have to plug the wire from the factory harness to the HID ballast in BACKWARDS.

Here's a pic of an HID slim ballast. The single red connection (which may not be red in the set you purchase) is the one you would plug in backwards to the way it looks like it should. The other two connections go to the HID bulb and can only be connected one way.

Image

Also, on the NBS (new body style) trucks, it's helpful to remove the airbox, and the drivers side battery to get better access to the bulbs. It's not that big of a deal. Some people have no problems gaining access without removing anything, it's your call.

These #'s come from thousands of people who own chevy trucks on several different forums who have verified the bulb types for them:
(You're more than welcome to verify for yourself or provide us with corrected info if you prove otherwise)

New Body Style Fog Lights are 5202, or H16.
Old Body Style CHEVROLET Fog Lights are 9145, or H10.
Old Body Style GMC Fog Lights are 880.


More Info in light of recent threads:

OBS trucks DO NOT need anything called "Code Eliminators" or "Wiring Harnesses" You just need the kits themselves.

For NBS trucks that have low beam/DRLs it is recommended by most, if not all, companies that you purchase a relay when replacing any bulb that doubles as a DRL (daytime running light). There are TONS of people out there with NBS trucks that are not using relays with their lows/drls and have had absolutely no problems. It's up to you whether or not you decide to purchase a relay along with your kit. Luckily, us OBS guys don't have to worry about it.

"Slim" Ballasts are just smaller than the normal sized ones... They are meant for installations in tight spaces.. your truck will have PLENTY of room for the larger ones, so it's up to you on which ones you get.

You can put HIDs in just about anything. Some use them in projector headlights even. I'm putting some in my quad, why not?!

There are TONS of vendors to choose from when ordering HIDs. Do your research, make some phone calls, and decide which one is right for you. Prices range anywhere from $25 per set to $300 per set depending on who you talk to.

I used this exact same write-up myself when converting to HIDs and had absolutely no problems during the installation process. I received the correct bulbs the first time and have been happy with my purchase ever since.

GOOD LUCK AND HERE'S TO SAFER LIGHTING!!
GW
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Re: How to choose HID headlights

Postby aksierra11 » Jan 29 2011, 2:43am

So do I need a relay?? What about my DRL's?


I'm confused.. maybe I will start another thread and see if someone can answer my questions for me
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Re: How to choose HID headlights

Postby LBZDMAX [OP] » Jan 29 2011, 6:00am

I hope you're kidding........
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Re: How to choose HID headlights

Postby aksierra11 » Jan 29 2011, 7:32pm

Lol ya...I think there is plenty of info out there if anyone has questions. They just have to be willing to look
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Re: How to choose HID headlights

Postby LBZDMAX [OP] » Jan 30 2011, 4:15am

Agreed.
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Re: How to choose HID headlights

Postby dsgrundy » Mar 23 2011, 5:40pm

Hey guys. I've been thumbing through all of the HID threads that I can find, gathering information. I want to get a set, and still have a question or two that I either haven't seen clarified or not yet asked. Question 1. Do I also upgrade to a projector housing or not? I've seen this mentioned a couple times. Most threads seem to lean toward not needing to upgrade, unless there is a specific legality issue wherever you are. Personally, I tend to like the specific light pattern of the projectors. Along with that, the only place I've found so far that sells projector housings (without that idiotic looking halo....personal opinion) is LMCtruck. Does anyone know if those housings are compatible with say Kryptonbulb's HID kit? Question 2. In the (hopefully) near future, I plan on installing a Buckstop winch bumper. Their bumper comes with openings for 6" round lights. I want to go with 55w HID's in there, but haven't found any HID lights/fixtures to match up there. I would definitely go with projectors in the bumper. Anyone have any suggestions for those as well?
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Re: How to choose HID headlights

Postby dsgrundy » Mar 23 2011, 5:46pm

I've also already verified that the DRL's in my 2000 are a separate light than my lows, so I don't have to worry about getting the relay setup. I would just have to do the all-on hi-beam mod. Pretty sure I've already read that for my year this can be done by hard grounding the ground lead for the lows.
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Re: How to choose HID headlights

Postby morganw » Mar 23 2011, 6:00pm

I would get projector housings just for the fact that unless you adjust the stock lights really low you are going to blind on coming traffic and thats just a d-bag thing to do IMO. Projectors will let you get the most out of your HID's. I dont know anybody that makes them without a halo ring off hand, but you dont have to hook up the halo part, not sure if that will make a difference in your decision. There is a HID bulb compatible for pretty much any housing out there. Whoever manufactures the housing will be able to get you that information.
as far as your bumper, there are companies that make projector fog light housings, not sure about 6" ones though, so you may have to make an adapter plate. Somebody else will have to chime in on that.
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Re: How to choose HID headlights

Postby 2000_sierra_Z71 » Mar 23 2011, 7:42pm

IMO the best hid kit for the price out there is ddm tuning, they come with lifetime warranty. I've ran em in all my vehicles and never had a problem! I highly recommend them

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Re: How to choose HID headlights

Postby LBZDMAX [OP] » Mar 23 2011, 9:26pm

Ok, dsgrundy,

If you like the projector style headlights then go for it. They're not needed with HID's but can be used with them no biggie. Fitment might be tight but you can swap out the rubber rings with the stockers for an easier fit if that helps. You can adjust your stock headlight housings also to help adjust the light output so either way it's your preference.

As far as your bumper lights go, most likely the cheapest route will be to just convert an inexpensive set of offroad lights to HID's since you just need the housings. There's how-to's out there on the process but it's pretty straight forward and you shouldn't have a problem. Just find the size that'll fit that buckstop bumper and mount em up. The bumper should come with mounting brackets. Plus, you really don't need 55w. With that many lights 35w will be enough light to start grass fires when it's dry outside, lol.

Also, DRL's do not need a relay in pretty much any model IMO. Some people worry a little too much and get sold on em for that 'warm and fuzzy' feeling. Vendors preach about them but they just want to sell something. Your 2000 will be good to go with the all-on-mod by grounding the lead for the lows.

These HID kits all come from the same few places anyway. Don't drink the kool-aid when someone tries to sell you a set for $150+ cause that's a joke. Just hook em up through DDM cause they're affordable and have a warranty and be done with it.
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